The interactive boat is an internal research project I am currently working on at Kin, exploring the relationships we make with objects through learning. The project looks at how boats and their methods of propulsion have changed over the centuries and examines the pros and cons of the different methods.
Looking at the way we learn through touch and sight, the interactive uses a series of props that users can choose. Users then construct their own boat by combining a series of different components – some functional and some purely aesthetic. The boat connects wirelessly to a screen – pairing the tactile activity with a digital display. As people construct their boat, information and animations pop up on the screen around the boat’s hull to inform and educate them about their choices.
To further the experience, I am now designing and adding a third element to the project which would allow people to test their finished boats against each other. The finished physical boats will be reproduced in digital form and set sail across the waters, tackling high seas, monsters and pirates.
My role to date has been to create the concept behind the project, looking at ways of learning and how we can remove ourselves from a purely digital learning experience, realised through the design of the experience, and the ways physical gameplay can effect digital environments. Alongside this I have also designed and built the physical boats, and prototyped the electronics within the boats to create an invisible digital experience.